Washing machines

The EU Energy Label for washing machines

The European Union Energy Label was introduced to allow consumers to factor in energy performance when purchasing new domestic appliances. Initially the label only applied to a small number of product groups, but with the ongoing implementation of the EU Energy-related Products Directive and Energy Labelling Directive, you will see the label appear on more and more electrical and electronic goods. 

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Market overview by Energy Label class

About 14% of washing machine models currently on the UK market are within the most efficient A+++ efficiency class.  A++ and A+ dishwashers account for 9% and 22%, respectively. 

With 43% (equivalent to 456 models), A-rated models currently dominate the market. 

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Comparing energy-use of old and new, highly energy-efficient appliances

Knowing exactly when to replace an appliance, especially one that is still working, can be difficult. 

You may find it useful to monitor the actual energy consumption of your dishwasher using a plug-in energy-usage meter. 

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How to get your appliance to perform most efficiently

Buying the most energy-efficient model will help you save energy and money in the long run. But it’s how you use your appliance that can really make a difference too. For example: 

Load it up. Always wait until you have a full load before putting on a wash - two half-loads will use more energy than a single full load. 

Wash at 30°C. Washing clothes at 30 degrees, rather than at higher temperatures, uses around 40% less energy. 

Don’t wash unnecessarily. Try to minimise unnecessary washing by hanging up clothes to air after wearing them. This enables you to get the maximum use out of each item before needing to wash it. 

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Disposing of your old appliance

Electrical appliances are one of the fastest growing waste streams in the UK and Europe, with the amount of e-waste estimated to be rising by at least 2.5% every year. 

Reusing or recycling WEEE saves thousands of tonnes of valuable materials being landfilled or otherwise disposed of. It also reduces environmental footprint associated with the extraction of raw materials and the manufacture of electrical and electronic goods.  

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